Obstructive sleep apnea in pregnancy
Apr 13, 2015

OSA (obstructive sleep apnea) impacts women and their unborn children in pregnancy. Frequent breathing pauses coupling with loud snoring during sleep leads to poor sleep quality and lower blood oxygen level.

Snoring is associated with an increased risk of preeclampsia and gestational diabetes. Preeclampsia, caused by pregnancy-induced hypertension, may lead to an increased risk of death for both mother and child.

Oxygen levels drop is stressful on the developing fetus. The consequences are including growth restriction, premature delivery, and other complications.

Sleep deprivation may contribute to fatigue, irritability, and depression. Increasing feelings of pain is also a consequence of OSA. Shorter sleep time (< 6 hours/night) leads to longer labor and higher rate of cesarean delivery. Inadequate sleep may also affect the development of the unborn baby by restricting the secretion of growth hormone.

To improve blood pressure, oxygenation, and pregnancy outcomes, using CPAP is an effective therapy.

Reference: Consequences of Sleep Problems in Pregnancy